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Cranberries are considered a super food as they are high in antioxidants. I have observed that they  are commonly used ingredient in Thanksgiving meals . People usually make drinks, sauce and desserts. I bought two packets of these seasonal berries thinking that I would make bread or cookies. But finally ended up making something unconventional to satisfy my south indian palate.

Puliyogare/Puliyodharai is a simple Tamarind Rice which is one of the most popular Southern Indian Rice varieties. “Puli” means “sour” refers to the use of Tamarind as one of the main ingredients. It is known for its longer shelf life and is often used as a great travel food. I have fond memories of my mother packing this during most of our long road trips. Every family has their own recipe, some use sesame seeds some don’t, some make it simple without lentils. This is my take on this classic recipe with a slight twist, i.e. addition of cranberries.

While cooking, these berries eventually pop up and become mushy so chopping them is not the best use of time. Traditionally Pulikachal or Puliyogare gojju( ‘Gojju’ means ‘gravy’)is made using Tamarind juice/water and spices. Addition of tamarind is a must in this recipe because it gives the much needed sourness & tanginess to balance the tartness from the berries. I used indian dry red chillies for the spice and jaggery for the sweetness. Instead of Jaggery brown sugar can be used too. What we make is the Puliyogare Gojju and once it is mixed with rice it becomes Puliyogare/Puliyodharai/Pulihara.

I was expecting a pinkish or reddish colored rice but surprisingly it just looked just like the regular Puliyogare. Looks like cooking it with tamarind and all the spices did the trick. They tastes best when cooked in sesame oil which is actually the authentic way of making this recipe.

Cranberry Puliyogare ( Sweet & Tangy Cranberry spiced Rice)

Ingredients

  • Cranberries - 12 oz (340gm), washed
  • Dry tamarind - a golf ball size soaked in water
  • Oil - 1/4 cup
  • Mustard seeds - 1 teaspoon
  • Urad Dal - 1 teaspoon
  • Chana Dal - 1 teaspoon
  • Red chilies - 2
  • Asafoetida - 1/4 tsp
  • Curry leaves - a few
  • Turmeric Powder - 1/2 teaspoon
  • Jaggery/Brown sugar - 1/3 cup or more
  • For the dry powder:
  • Oil - 1 teaspoon
  • Split Chickpeas (Chana dal) - 1 tablespoon
  • Black Gram (Urad dal) - 3//4 tablespoon
  • Coriander seeds - 1.5 tablespoon
  • Asafoetida - 1/2 teaspoon
  • Sesame seeds - 1 tablespoon
  • Dry red chilies - 6-7 (Indian Variety)

Instructions

First lets make the spice powder . Heat a teaspoon oil and roast urad dal, chana dal, red chilies, asafoetida and red chilies until golden. Finally add sesame seeds and roast until light brown, Cool down and grind it into coarse powder.

Again in the same pan add 1/4 cup oil, add mustard seeds, urad dal, chana dal, curry leaves, 1-2 red chili crushed and asafoetida. Now add the washed cranberries and turmeric. Mix well. Lower the flame and cook until all the cranberries pops up and turns mushy. Pour the tamarind juice and salt. mix and cook until all the raw smell from tamarind disappears and the water seems to evaporate. Now add the powder and jaggery. Do a taste check and add more jaggery if needed. It needs to have a right balance of sweetness and tanginess.

When ready mix with cooked rice and enjoy with some chips.

http://www.thefoodielovers.com/2017/12/cranberry-puliyogare-sweet-tangy-cranberry-spiced-rice/

Just use little gojju to mix with cooked Rice. You wouldn’t need the whole batch. The Gojju should be refrigerated and should be good for about two weeks or so. Enjoy!

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We as a family love Indian food. My sister in law had come over to visit us and I was in a cooking spree. One of the things that she wanted to have before she left was an Indianized Pizza. So I made her a “Vegetable Pizza with Indian spices”. I made the pasta sauce using onion & tomatoes. To give it a little twist I added bell peppers and carrots too. It was a nice change to the usual sauce I’ve made so far. As you would know by now that I am not a big fan of Pizzas. My husband always says that “ only things that are prepared at home are my favorites” and since I don’t like pizzas they are never made in my kitchen:). lol!. The last time I made Pizza was a very long time back, here it is –Pizza Margherita.

The sauce was a very simple one but loaded with veggies,thus making it healthy. Similarly, I replaced half of the all-purpose flour with Whole wheat pastry flour to make it slightly healthy. I had picked up a canned tomato sauce(not the usual Heinz sauce/ketchup) from Trader Joe’s that came handy; it looked more like a paste though. It gave the sauce a nice red color and tasted great too. Everyone was happy with the pizza, it had the perfect crunchy base, loaded with veggies and not to forget the main ingredient Cheese. It was super cheesy and delicious!

VEGETABLE PIZZA WITH INDIAN SPICES

PIZZA BASE
Ingredients:
1 tablespoon yeast
2/3 cup warm milk plus as required
1 cup whole wheat pastry flour
1.5 cup all-purpose flour
3 tablespoon olive oil
½ teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon sugar
Make the dough – In the bowl of a stand mixer, add 2/3 cup warm milk and yeast. Set it aside for about 10 minutes. Add all the other ingredients and mix on low speed. Gradually add more milk if required to make a soft dough. Knead for about a minute. Transfer to a greased glass bowl, cover with plastic and let It rise for about 1.5 – 2 hours, until doubled in size.

PIZZA SAUCE
Ingredients:

1.5 tablespoon olive oil
1 large onion chopped
1/3 cup bell pepper chopped
¼ cup carrot grated
½ cup tomato paste/sauce
½ teaspoon chili powder/ cayenne pepper
1 teaspoon garam masala/pav bhaji masala
Salt as per taste
Topping – Onions, bell pepper, corn, pineapple, spinach and mozzarella cheese
Blanch the tomatoes for about ten minutes. Peel the skin and mash it. Heat oil in a pan, add onions and sauté until light brown. Slowly add the paste and tomatoes. Mix in the bell pepper and carrot. Allow it to cook for a bit,until all the water evaporates. Lastly, add the salt, chili powder and garam masala. Mix and set it aside.

Base – When the dough has risen, knock it back and divide into six balls and roll out each onto a work surface. Spread the sauce over each pizza base and top with the vegetables (topping ingredients).
Preheat the oven at 400F. Bake the pizzas in the oven until the bases are crisp ; golden brown around the edges and cheese has melted.

Bon Apetite!

Nina

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I never thought that I would be a victim of “PLAGIARISM”.It is for one of my post – Bourbon Biscuits. Its very disappointing to see a fellow blogger conveniently copy my work.Am always open to the idea of sharing and over the past few years I have learnt a lot thru the blogging community.The least I expect from someone is an acknowledgement. People think they can be smart by changing the measurement units and get away unnoticed??. I am sorry they are grossly mistaken. I am deeply hurt and alarmed at the lack of basic blogging etiquette. I don?t want to name the person, however I hope the person realizes the mistake and doesn’t repeat.

P.S – I am working on my own website,hence haven’t been blogging much,will be back soon with a BANG!

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